Last weekend after Steven and I finished painting our upstairs, I looked at the space and realized that it needed more light sources, especially near this rocking chair. So I made this fun hand sconce light fixture. If you use a pre-made corded light, this is a quick and easy DIY project with tons of possibilities, but you can totally customize it if you wire your own light. And of course you can play around with how the hand holds the light.
I love this light fixture as a reading light next to a chair, but wouldn’t it be cute as a bedside lamp?
Sometimes I think being a DIY-er is a double-edged sword, because it contributes to my very picky tendencies. If I can make something myself, to my exact specifications, I have trouble buying a version that’s not QUITE what I picture, but would save me some time and trouble (and maybe even money). Sure, this pre-made pendant light is almost perfect, but I like this light socket better. Guess which one I used.
The one I put together myself, of course.
So this project is choose-your-own-difficulty-level. If you want to buy a pre-made light pendant (color cord sells some, too), go for it, but if you’re a picky DIY-er who isn’t afraid of a little wiring, you can totally customize your own light. If you’re ready to wire your own, but not sure where to start, I have a list of the parts I used for mine below, and these videos (especially this one) will get you off on the right track. I used to be intimidated by wiring, but (legal disclaimer that I’m not responsible if you burn your house down) light fixtures really just involve cutting and twisting wires around screws. It’s way easier than I thought before I tried it.
DIY Hand Sconce Light Fixture
Wooden hand model – I used the smaller “female hand,” but the bigger “male hand” would work, too.
Dowel screws – Mine were 1/4″ and 2″-long.
Drywall anchor – Optional, but may be necessary if you’re not mounting the hand on a wall stud.
Pre-made corded pendant light – Or make your own, see supplies needed below.
Corded pendant light supplies
Black metallic keyed socket (“keyed” means it has a switch)
Black metal cord grip
Black twisted wire – 6 feet
Black plug end – These may be identical, but I actually used this plug.
Drill bits – I used a 1/8″ bit and a 7/32″ bit.
1. Drill a hole in the base of the hand for the dowel screw. Start with a 1/8″ bit, then work your way up to a larger bit until the hole is large enough to screw in the dowel screw. The largest bit I used for my 1/4″ dowel screws was 7/32″. The base of my hand is covered in red felt, but I could tell that the center already had a hole with hardware in it beneath the felt, so I located my screw hole halfway between the center hole and the edge.
2. Using pliers to hold it, screw the dowel screw halfway into the hand.
3. Pick a spot on the wall to mount your light. Use your studfinder to find a stud, and if possible, drill your hole there. If you can’t find a stud/it’s not in the right place, you may need to use a drywall anchor.
4. Screw your hand into the wall. Try to resist the urge to immediately make it give everyone the finger.
5. Now plug in your light, and have fun arranging the cord around the hand.